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uincipal and most frequented streets.are so precipitous, that tt is almost impracticable to pass them with carriages. Even :lie carmen are compelled invariably to lock their wheels, in sliding down the declivities. For this purpose they use a large flat stone, fastened by an iron chain. It is the most incomfortable town of its size, I have ever seen, with the jxception perhaps of some parts of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. To infirm and asthmatic persons particularly, it must be a severe effort to go to church, requiring all the zeal and strong sense of religious duty, by which the rigid protestants of the Vaud are actuated.
The Cathedral is a Gothic structure, rearing its towers and steeples to such an ajrial height, as to form a conspicuous object from all parts of the lake and its shores. Its interior is handsome, but without any of the splendour of Catholic churches. It contains many sepulchral monuments, in the style of the old English tombs. Great men and women here lie in state.
Towards evening we had a charming, though solitary walk, upon the public promenade, crowning one of the eminences, planted with forest trees, and furnished with seats for repose, where the visitant may sit and look off upon some of the most splendid scenery in the world. But with all its charms, this hill seems to be but little frequented. The inhabitants of Lausanne are too active and industrious, to lounge upon parades. They are as brisk, busy, and bustling, as the air of their own mountains; and industry never permits the Mood or intellect to stagnate.
. Lausanne has a population of 12,000. It has been several times destroyed by fire, and has undergone a full share of those civil commotions and revolutions, by which the Swiss mountains have been agitated. It was subject to Bern till 1803, when it became the capital of the independent Canton of
Vaud. Its buildings are substantial, neat, and comfortable; its climate serene and healthy ; and the prices of living comparatively low; rendering it in all respects an eligible residence, to which the English, who are keen-sighted in looking out for the good things of this world, have resorted in great numbers. London papers of a late date were found at the reading-room, and the windows of booksellers are filled with English publications. The town has a great number of useful institutions—hospitals, colleges, academies, and schools, such as an intelligent and active people would natiN rally introduce and maintain with vigour. But none of them / possess any striking peculiarities, which in this stage of my work would justify me in entering into detail.
RETURN TO GENEVA—SKETCH OF THE CITY VIEW FROM THE
WATER ASPECT OF THE STREETS AND BUILDINGS HOTEL
DE VILLE LEGISLATIVE HALLS POLITICAL STATE OF
SWITZERLAND CATHEDRAL REMINISCENCES OF CALVIN
MUSEUM BOTANIC GARDEN DEFENCES OF THE CITY—
COLLEGE LIBRARY HOSPITAL—ATHENAEUM PANORAMA
OF SWITZERLAND BIRTH-PLACE OF ROUSSEAU EXCURSION
TO THE JUNCTION OF THE RHONE AND ARTE DEPARTUBE
FROM GENEVA JURA ALPS LAST VIEW FROM THEIR SUMMITS.
October, 1826.—On the morning of the 18th, we left Lausanne and embarked at Ouchy, on board the steam-boat Leman for Geneva. In the course of the passage, I saw repeatedly the image of Mont Blanc, reflected from the placid bosom of the lake. The mirror was so perfect, that the patches of naked rock were distinguishable from the glaciers. Lord Byron has cited this phenomenon, as very remarkable. But why should it be so considered 1 A line drawn from the surface of the water, across the intervening country, would intersect a large frustum of the cone; and surely it is no miracle, that an object so conspicuous and strongly marked, as the peak of a mountain, brought within a short apparent distance by its magnitude, should be reflected as perfectly, as the humbler hill or plant upon the shore.
Geneva does not appear well in approaching it from the lake. In neatness and beauty it will bear no comparison with its namesake in the United States, situated upon a lake scarcely less romantic. The backs of large old ware-houses, together with heaps of lumber and wood piled upon the wharves, intercept the view of the better parts of the city, and form but a sorry termination of a voyage, which in its progress exhibits so much splendour of scenery. Though the water at the outlet is shoal, it retains its purity even to the docks, being motionless and unagitated by tides. For miles the bottom was distinctly seen.
On the morning after our return to Geneva, we set about examining the city in good earnest, anxious to see as much of it, as the two remaining days to which our visit was restricted, would permit. A very intelligent and obliging citizen and bis son, to whom we had taken letters, afforded us every facility in obtaining access to such institutions, as are most interesting to strangers. One of these gentlemen was with us nearly the whole time; while the accomplished and literary lady of the house contributed her share of hospitality, by giving us a dinner and a tea-party, with a dish of conversation, more acceptable than the bounties of her table, though served up in the neatest Swiss style.
My readers need not be told that nearly all the institutions of Geneva are of a useful and practical kind. Here are no palaces, galleries, and churches—no triumphal arches, corsos, and theatres, such as had been left beyond the Alps. The city is plain and republican to a proverb. In point of architecture, there is not a building which rises above mediocrity; and comfort has been more consulted than taste. Some of the streets are spacious and neat, but seldom stately and elegant; while others are positively uncouth, the fronts of the houses being hung with shapeless wooden galleries, forming a species of arcades, which contribute as little to convenience as to ornament. Indeed, the object of these Gothic projections could hardly be divined. The materials of the buildings are stone, stucco, and wood, often thrown together promiscuously, as they might best answer the purpose of keeping out the winter air from the mountains, and of furnishing snug apartments. About the roofs, eves, and the steeples of churches, a profusion of tin plates is used, which in a bright sun almost dazzles the eye, and produces an odd contrast to the darkened walls.
Our first visit was to the Hotel de Ville or Town House. The ascent to the halls of legislation is by a winding passage, like that leading to the roof of St. Peter's at Rome. A mule might walk up without difficulty, as some asses probably have done, even in the city of Rousseau and Necker. The rationale of such a stair-way reverts to the very origin of the term Senate, among the ancient Romans, the members of which received their appellations from advanced age. Determined to adhere to classical etymologies, as well as to political expediency, the Genevese constructed the entrance to their Senate Chamber, in such a manner, that old men might be borne up in sedans, or walk, if not too infirm, with • the greatest convenience.
The halls of the Town House, the seat of the legislature for the Canton, are plain in the extreme; it might be added, even to meanness. Many of the leathern coverings of the benches are patched and botched in a way, that no pretty Swiss girl would tolerate. If this ultra-republican simplicity were carried throughout all the ornaments, it would be less objectionable; but the chamber adjoining the hall of representatives contains a gallery of the portraits of foreign kings and queens. I inquired what these personages had to do with the republicans of Geneva, in making laws, but received no satisfactory answer. The arms of the Canton, consisting of the Key, presented by Charlemagne, and an Eagle wearing a Crown, something in the style of the papal bird, are less patriotic than the "Liberie' et Patrie" of the Vaud, and do not tally exactly with ragged leather benches.
But the traveller may look in vain for any thing like political consistency in the present state of Switzerland. It retains but a shadow of its former freedom and glory. The country is literally canlonized by the influence of the Holy Alliance. France has the guardianship of one portion, and Austria of the remainder. The ties of confederation are merely nominal. Deputies from the Cantons do, it is true, meet at Zurich, but not for the purposes of legislation; and they dare not move a finger, except at the beck of their masters. They claim the right of declaring war and making peace, with a few other prerogatives, which are never exercised, and which are left them pro forma. Switzerland has no federal laws, no common interests, no ligaments to bind the union together. The independent Cantons have each a legislature, to pass municipal statutes; but even these are subject to the dictation and supervision of foreign powers. Any attempt to establish national freedom would be instantly crushed, as incompatible with the principles of the allied sovereigns.
Aside from this foreign influence, there are no affinities in the moral and political elements of the country. Separated by lakes and impassable glaciers, the Cantons know and care as little about one another, as they do about the states of Italy or of Germany. Each is engaged in the narrow circle of its own interests, limited perhaps to a secluded vale, or a circumscribed district. Nay more, there is a po■itive repulsion and hostility of feeling between some of the Cantons, in consequence of a difference ia religion. Half jf them are Catholics, and the rest Protestants, who in Europe can no more mingle than oil and water. To all appearances, elements thus radically discordant will preclude, for a long course of years at least, any thing like national views, and the establishment of a confederacy similar to our own, even if the Holy Alliance should tolerate the existence of free principles.
Our next call was at the Cathedral, which is a stately and handsome pile of Gothic architecture. The interior is plain, but neat and commodious, suited to the worship of a people, whose religion is addressed to the ear, and not to the eye. 31ost of the inhabitants of Geneva are protestants. The number of Catholics does not exceed two or three thousand; about one tenth of the population of the city. Among the monuments is a lofty tomb in memory of a brother to Henry III. of France. We inquired for that of Calvin. The sexton informed us, that he made a special request to be buried in the public cemetery, and that no sepulchral honours should be paid to his dust. A visit was made to a building, at the corner of two streets, from the window of which he first proclaimed the doctrines of the Reformation; and also to the house, in which he died.
From the tower of the Cathedral, which is very lofty and arduous of ascent, we had a perfect view of the city. It covers little ground, is extremely compact, and strongly fortified. The Rhone divides it into unequal portions, that on the southern bank being much the most extensive and populous. Few places can be compared with Geneva in eligibility of position, in purity of streams, serenity of skies, and fertility of the adjacent country. Such is the salubrity of the noble river, which rolls beneath the walls, that its waters are raised by ponderous machinery, moved by its own current, for the supply of the city.
The Museum is an extensive, valuable, and interesting establishment. Its cabinets of natural history, its collections of minerals, organic remains, reptiles, insects, fishes, birds, and quadrupeds, are extremely rich, and arranged with the utmost scientific precision. Not a link is wanting or out of its place, in the great chain of being. The endless varieties of the butterfly, classically designated and tastefully disposed, particularly arrested my attention. Among the rarer